Dunfermline Athletic

Manager post Kelty Hearts

Saturday, 1st Apr 2023

01/04/23: link to audio of James McPake’s post match comments

- - Listen to this James McPake interview

After the goalless draw with Kelty Hearts, Dunfermline manager James McPake expressed his frustrations with the game calling the first half boring:-

“I have said this a few times, I can’t fault the players for effort, endeavour and everything they gave again. There is just a frustration there in terms of not creating enough to get the fans going. The place was a bit flat today which I get but it is also disappointing as well. On all sides, they wanted us to get something going and the frustration was building.

“The players have been excellent, the fans have been excellent all season but just today we could have been doing with something whether it was a player or us. We tried, the fans tried, they all gave it a go. It was a bit of a boring game, I think everybody who was here will say that but it wasn’t through lack of effort or commitment from the players.

“We have now broken the club’s unbeaten run - that’s us on eighteen in a single season, Deniz Mehmet has now beat Ian Westwater with the single most clean sheets in all competitions in a season. There are a couple of wee things but ultimately we wanted three points. We didn’t get them but huge credit to Kelty.

“We saw them do that to Falkirk and I think they created more at the Falkirk Stadium. They fired across the goal where Austin could score at the back post. They are a threat. That’s two draws and two victories we have had and every game has been really tough. It could have gone either way to be fair so credit to John Potter, his staff and players. We will dust ourselves down, we have another game next week and we look forward to that.”

You warned this could be a sticky game but a draw is not a disaster?

“No, it’s another clean sheet that as I say has broken the record. We wanted three points, we would have taken winning 2-1 and losing all them but that’s fine.

“What the players have given now for thirty league games and in the Premier Sports Cup, the SPFL Trust Trophy and the Scottish Cup has been incredible. The work they have done has been excellent, the work from everybody at the football club after such a poor season year. I am only looking at that from the outside and then speaking to people when I came in.

“Everyone is pushing in the right direction and we have six more games to go just to keep pushing, to keep working hard. Yes it is not a disaster. We would have loved to have won the game but so would Kelty. To be fair in the game up there we snuck a win in the final five minutes when we didn’t deserve anything from the game.

“So there has to be a bit of honesty and say that some days it just doesn’t go for you. It wasn’t through lack of trying, that’s the most important thing. Did they down tools or did the players look frightened or scared? No, I just think today was one of those days that you do get in football.

“I’m not going to say that we had loads of chances to win the game or we cut through them, because we didn’t. Credit to Kelty for that, they are hard to break down we know that. We tried change of personnel, change of shape but we just couldn’t find a way.

“It is probably one of the first times this season where we have been so stuck that we couldn’t find a way but over the course of 40 competitive games now and that’s the first time that I have come out and been frustrated at that.

“As I have said from the start, as long as the players keep giving everything, keep fighting, keep going which they have done I will be happy, the fans will be happy. They will not be happy at the minute just like I’m not but when the dust settles and they look back over this season then you never know, that might be an important point.”

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